Merkel demands release of Germans unduly imprisoned in Turkey

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Fairness tops voter concerns

31 August, 2017

Chancellor Angela Merkel said Tuesday that she did the right thing by allowing large numbers of migrants into Germany two years ago, but said Europe hasn't done enough to resolve the refugee problem properly since then.

As the election campaign heats up, and refugee integration and security concerns boost the far-right AfD in her native eastern Germany, Dr Merkel dismissed the party as "racist" for launching a broadside against her Turkish-German integration minister.

She stated this on Tuesday at an annual press conference, an Ukrinform correspondent reports from Germany.

With exactly four weeks remaining until the September 24 election and a week before their only TV debate, Schulz and Merkel, who is seeking a fourth term, engaged in an indirect TV interview battle on separate networks on Sunday.

She now enjoys a double-digit lead in the polls against her Social Democratic rival Martin Schulz in her bid for a fourth term.

As soon as the projects were completed, another 3 billion euros would be made available to Ankara, she added.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned the United Kingdom that it must pay what it owes the European Union as part of Brexit talks, saying it's misleading to view the costs as a divorce bill.

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In a state election in 2016, the AfD scored around 32% of the vote in the city, once the heart of East Germany's chemicals industry.

Angela Merkel says she wants to work more closely with Libya's government to curtail illegal migration from Africa to Europe. Obviously, the crowds were still furious over her refugee policies that have seen more than 1-million refugees entered the country since late 2015.

Mrs Merkel also attacked European Union countries that refused to accept migrants as part of a redistribution plan, explaining that such behaviour is "not on".

The Chancellor was booed as she ascended the stage and the outbursts continued.

She called for the release of German citizens swept up in the aftermath of last year's failed coup attempt, calling their imprisonment "unjustified".

"This is a very complicated phase of our relationship" with Turkey, Merkel said.

"You've raised the issue of the rule of law in Poland - that's a serious issue because the requirements for cooperation within the European Union are the principles of the rule of law". I take what the (European) Commission says on this very seriously and tomorrow (European Commission President) Jean-Claude Juncker will come to Germany and of course I'll talk about it with him in detail.

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